Breast reconstruction following mastectomy is required to be covered by insurance in United States. However, few patients are ever given detailed information concerning the options available to them for breast reconstruction. According to a recent article a state law that was signed by Gov. David A. Paterson in New York will require hospitals and doctors to discuss breast reconstruction options with their patient prior to performing cancer surgery. This will include providing information about insurance coverage and referring them to a different hospital if necessary to have reconstructive surgery. The law was heavily influenced by the efforts of Dr. Evan Garfein of New York. Congress has guarantee universal coverage for breast reconstruction after cancer surgery since 1998. But, Dr. Garfein reported that only 30 to 40% of the women who had mastectomies now received breast reconstruction. He is convinced that the number would be closer to 75% had women been informed of their options. While currently this law does not exist in California, the need for such legislation should be seriously considered. Women who were diagnosed with breast cancer should be informed concerning their breast reconstruction options at the same time they are informed of their breast cancer treatment options which are likely to include at the very minimum a lumpectomy or a full bilateral mastectomy. Patients are often in a state of shock when diagnosed with breast cancer so having a law that requires treating breast cancer physicians to refer the patient to a reconstructive plastic surgeon for reconstructive options allows the patient to make a fully informed decision concerning her treatment. Dr. Seify explains multiple options to breast cancer patients concerning their breast reconstruction treatment. These could include fat grafting, nipple sparing mastectomy, one stage breast reconstruction and more. Each patient is treated individually and Dr. Seify invest the time in each consultation to help patients understand fully their options and make the most informed decisions possible. Patients who are considering breast reconstruction surgery following a breast cancer diagnosis are encouraged to contact Dr. Seify and schedule a consultation.
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